Bhopal, February 12
Curtains came down on the Khelo India Youth Games 2022 Madhya Pradesh (KIYG2022MP) India's "Youth Olympics", at the beautiful Upper Lake area of the Madhya Pradesh's state capital. Jaiveer Motwani of Maharashtra and Punjab's Jasnoor Kaur, claimed the title of the fastest boy and girl swimmers of the games, after winning the Boys and Girls 50m freestyle event on the final day, at the Prakash Tarun Pushkar pool in the city.
Maharashtra, with a haul of 56 gold, 55 silver and 50 bronze medals emerged as the overall champions, while Haryana (40 golds) and hosts Madhya Pradesh with 39 golds were second and third respectively.
The closing ceremony was attended among others by the MP Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan, Anurag Singh Thakur, Minister for Information and Broadcasting and Youth Affairs and Sports, Government of India and Yashodhara Raje Scindia, the Minster for Sports and Youth Welfare, Government of MP. An hour-long Champions bus parade was also organized before the closing ceremony, which was flagged off from Chief Minister's residence by the CM himself.
The parade and the closing ceremony were preceded by the final Day 13 of sporting competitions, with eight golds in swimming and five in wrestling to be decided.
Champions Maharashtra also dominated proceedings in the swimming pool. On Day 13, they picked up three of the eight gold medals up for grabs, including Jaiveer's gold and their leading light Apeksha Fernandes, who bagged her fifth gold of the games, with a win in the Girls' 50m breaststroke in a time of 33.92 secs. Besides, they also won the Boys 4x100m relay to amass a haul of 26 medals from the pool, including 14 golds. Karnataka was next best with six golds and a haul of 25 medals.
The star of the final day in the pool however was Punjab's Jasnoor, whose win in the Girls' 50m freestyle came with a new national youth and meet record time of 26.92 secs.
At the Wrestling mat inside the TT Nagar stadium, Delhi grapplers dominated the final day winning three of the five golds on offer. Ramandeep won the Boys 92kg Greco Roman category, defeating state-mate Hardeep Rath in the final. Women wrestlers Neha Sharma and Shiksha also won gold.
Haryana also picked up a gold through Sachin Mor in the Boys 80kg and while Rajasthan's Lalit Kumar won the Boys 55kg category.
The hour-long Champions bus parade travelled through different parts of the city, making a couple of stops in between at pre-notified checkpoints. Artists on floats performed traditional martial arts like Kalarripayattu and Gatka, besides performances by Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) exponents and football, rope and cycle artists. Champion athlete and Olympic medalist Gagan Narang, was also at hand to address the champions at the first checkpoint while emcees and dance performances kept the crowds engaged at all times.
The closing ceremony was immaculately planned. It began once the champions and dignitaries deboarded the bus and entered the venue and flute player Anirban Roy set the ball rolling, with a wonderful rendition of Vande Mataram. Scindia then gave the welcome address, before Thakur and CM Shivraj, made their addresses. In between a couple of films were aired, among them one titled 'Ek Bharat Shresht Bharat', which captivated the audience.
The felicitations followed and one by one all key sponsors, including State Bank of India (SBI), Sports for All and Dream Sports were felicitated. The winners followed next and the biggest cheer was reserved for the hosts Madhya Pradesh, who took home the 2nd Runner-Up Trophy with a haul of 39 gold, 30 silver and 27 bronze medals. Haryana was awarded the 1st Runner-Up Trophy for their haul of 40 gold, 28 silver and 50 bronze medals.
The final and most coveted award went to the champion state Maharashtra with a haul of 56 gold, 55 silver and 49 bronze medals, who were then called on stage and presented with the glittering Winners Trophy.
The Ceremony ended with a beautifully choreographed dance performance to the popular anthem of the games, "Hindustan ka Dil Dhadka do" and photo opportunities of the winners with the dignitaries.
The KIYG2022MP saw over 6000 athletes and support staff from 36 states and union territories of the country converge into nine cities over 13 days of competition in 27 sporting disciplines. Eight of those cities, Bhopal, Indore, Ujjain, Maheshwar, Balaghat, Mandla, Jabalpur and Gwalior, were spread across the vast central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh (M.P), while the national capital Delhi, hosted the track cycling events. Maharashtra topped the medal tally with Haryana and hosts M.P finishing as 1st and 2nd Runner Up respectively. A total of 25 national youth records were shattered by 12 athletes during the period of the games.
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